DB Snapshots and Migration with RDS

Learn about DB snapshots, high availability approaches, and migration with RDS.

DB snapshots

DB snapshots are user-initiated and enable you to back up your DB instance in a known state as frequently as you wish and then restore to that specific state. However, they cannot be used for point-in-time recovery.

  • You can restore up to the last 5 minutes.
  • Snapshots can be shared with other AWS accounts.
  • Snapshots are stored on S3 and remain on S3 until manually deleted.
  • Backups are taken within a defined window. I/O is briefly suspended while backups initialize and may increase latency (applicable to single-AZ RDS).
  • DB snapshots that are performed manually will be stored even after the RDS instance is deleted.


You cannot restore from a DB snapshot to an existing DB;a new instance is created when you restore. Restored DBs will always be a new RDS instance with a new DNS endpoint.

Only default DB parameters and security groups are restored; you must manually associate all other DB parameters and SGs.


It is recommended to take a final snapshot before deleting an RDS instance.

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